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STATUS graphite fretless necks? anyone?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by akori, Dec 25, 2013.

  1. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    I have found little reliable info from experienced players on STATUS graphite replacement necks (in this case, a Jazz fretless).
    Anyone ever have one? All comments are appreciated. Especially: weight, tone, actual straightness, adjustability, stability...
    I have some experience w/ moses ("meh", bigtime...poor quality all around, returned under warranty.) and Modulus (R.I.P.) So STATUS is the only resort for a J replacement graphite fretless.

  2. IGotGas

    IGotGas Cajun Rocker Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2011
    Baton Rouge, LA
    I own several Stati, and I've put several necks on Fender body's by both Status and Moses. Of the three Moses necks, only one worked out for me (it was a heavily customized from their factory order so maybe that played a roll?).

    Simply put, anything graphite from Status is the bees knees. Now, I don't play fretless so I can't speak to that. But the build on the two Status necks I purchased was simply peerless. The boards were fantastic, the necks stayed straight even after two years of L O N G tours and getting beat up and introduced to wide varieties of temperature and humidity (any time there WAS a problem, it was the body/neck seat, never the neck). The fret work was outstanding to boot. I miss those two basses so much (I sold them about a year ago) that I'm about to embark on a pretty cool Blacktop J bass body / status neck build this coming spring. I'm even going to be extra douchy and have an over the top led lights package installed on the neck in the UK before it gets shipped over. I hope to be a temp & humidity proof replica of TRON!! lol
  3. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Where does the Stati (or Statii) plurial for Status basses originate ?
    The latin plurial of status is status and in English wouldn't that be Statuses ?

    Anyway, Status necks are awesome in all possible ways and service is top notch.
  4. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    Thanks IGG:
    Hearing about true stability is of course paramount. I live in Colorado...dry s a bone most the year, hard on wood...only the best wood survive straight.
    But any comments on weight? I always weigh each neck, body/component so I know the weight of a build before I assemble it. I can ask Status, but assuming any of them were Jazz necks, do you remember the weight?

    Thanks again...I really do want to get one. If I could get totally used to synthetics, and milk the tones out of them, I'd likely stick with them. *Love* wood, but I'm sensitive to the most minute changes in height/ playability. I keep my string action exceedingly low on all of my axes...about 20 of them. Lots of work. I've always dreamed of having a graphite neck that simply stayed the same every day.
  5. eban3

    eban3 Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2007
    Palm Bay FL
    I have a status with a lined fretless neck ...love it never had any problems with it ever
  6. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    stata? (nah, that would be plural of "statum", i guess) :p

    anyway, do they have adjustable rods? no matter how nice, i wouldn't have a neck without one; i've seen way too many solid graphite necks from way too many different top-notch companies with un-fixable upbow to ever go without a truss rod.
  7. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    No trussrod in Status necks.
    Graphite is a lot heavier than wood. Density roughly 1.2.
  8. onda'bass

    onda'bass Supporting Member

    Sep 5, 2010
    Buffalo Ny
    not true.. mine has a truss rod.
  9. steelbed45

    steelbed45 TRemington Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2011
    Nolanville, TX
    +1. I believe at one point they didn't, but the replacement neck I ordered in 2002 had one and the website states they do. I would not hesitate to purchase from them again as my customer service experience was excellent and the neck was flawless.
  10. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Yes, my mistake they now have dual trussrods.
  11. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    Jazz Ad: "

    Yeah, graphite necks, due to the compositions typically employed in manufacture, are almost always a lot heavier than, say maple. It varies, since composition varies... The ratio can be much worse than 1.2 to 1. I had extensive contact with Modulus...some Jazz replacement necks could weigh two pounds, six ounces...a full pound over a moderate weight maple jazz neck. Heavy as or heavier than a Warmoth with steel rods and dual-acting trussrod. It an be atrocious. percieved weight skyrockets, even if there is no neck dive. It's a BAD place to have weight. On many Modulus, it just plain freaking hurts. Some people don't care. I notice...too lean. No fat pad to cushion.

    I swear to God, it is one of the greatest disappointments in my life, visa-vis dreams about technology, that we have not yet reached: the perfect hair loss tonic (though I dodged that bullet)...insurance would be nice! and no perfect replacement for wood. But I do believe it will happen.

    About the trussrod, it's a worthy mention the Moses I returned could not maintain it's position, giving in to string tension...would NOT go straight, even with a trussrod... a real POS. it was shoddy all the way around. Whereas we know the original Steinbergers and Moduli...had no trussrod, and many if not all, were rigid and strong as hell. i know some did warp...
  12. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    Nice to know: I have not yet heard a complaint about Status. They apparently take pride...
  13. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    is yours a replacement neck: if so, please describe your take on sound, stability, weight, etc!. Thanks
  14. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    Yeah, I heard due to the ultra rigid composition of early Steinbergers and Modulusessessesses, that if they bent, that was their new shape. No going back. Probably a plus for sound if they stayed bolt straight, but no more than a good home defense weapon if they torqued.
  15. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    the weight issue hadn't occurred to me! i'd think they could kill both birds with one stone, by making them light enough to balance comfortably, then using a truss rod to control straightness; they'd still be immune to the weather and all that.

    partially hollow maybe, or they could do the parker thing and have the rigid graphite around a wood core.
  16. younggun


    Jul 19, 2008
    San Antonio
    Lot's of really good info about Status basses here on the Status forums:
  17. akori


    Oct 18, 2007
    walterw; you know about Modulus' work with the Genesis? line? whichever the name, it was a graphite/ carbon wrap spine surrounded by various tonewoods. Annecdotal reports and tal with modulus suggested (to me, imo) they ere not quite as stable as the 100% manmade product...no surprise there. I'll put all disclaimer of condescencion (sp) out now; you may know all of this. Trouble is, graphite formulations can vary so much. construction is labor intensive & varies from neck to neck...adding woods introduces so many variables. Even phenolic boards are of course just layers of organic material (wood/ paper/ etc) impregnated with phenolic resin, and if you research all this, you'll find there's not a lot of consensus over the moisture impermeability of phenolics. On the contrary, both scientific and regular sources suggest the stuff actually absorbs moisture.
    Bummer. And worst of all, phenolic boards always have the propensity to expand/ contract at differential rates than the graphite necks they are glued to, simply due to their reaction to normal or severe heat/ cold. Modulus certainly encountered frank delamination of phenolic boards. I don't know why phenolic has not been replaced by the same surface as the neck...why use phenolic at all? I agree it sounds good-even GREAT as a fretless fingerboard. I love it. One of the most radically growly, warm basses I ever played was a boutique build with a phenolic board. But much research will yield it is a problematic material (can vary a lot, too)...added to the differential heat/ cold expansion of various graphites, even more so.
    In other words, no perfectly stable synthetic has been widely used...yet, even if the vast majority of players have had a great experience. I'd hope it's about 90% more reliably stable than wood. I am most certainly in search of materials that are light enough to be truly comfortable (builds at 8.5 pounds or less), and virtually total stability, with necks straight as a perfect straight edge. That's how I set up all my fretlesses, and fretted basses, too. Even guitars . Crazy low action.
    The issues are super interesting, enthralling. I wish I knew the chemistry involved, and plan to grasp it and maybe try to make my own own some day. I know it's posssib;e.
    The whole parker thing seems to offer a lot of promise; wood wrapped in carbon fiber tape...provided that wrap TOTALLY blocks ALL moisture exchange. THis seems to TRULY be an elusive property. Lots of reading on all kinds of resins in many applications has yielded the most surprising quandaries and frankly counterintuitive results.
    You might be amazed to read how many annecdotal, part science-based and respectably scientific articles suggest or demonstrate that epoxies, polyesters, vinylesters actually DON't provide the moisture barriers we'd think. And CA (cyanoacrylate, or super glue) is a super cool substance that has great uses in coating fingerboards & necks, but there's huge debate as to flexibility, brittleness, permeability, etc.
    It seems to me in my highly considered opinion, that the main thing is to keep all moisture levels totally constant. Eliminate all exchange across a barrier. Then we can at least treat axes like people : don't leave them in cars or hot/ cold environments, and they will be totally predictable, and never need adjustment- if the necks and body joints are also totally strong...no shifting due to mechanical stress either.
    Then there's weight, then tone. But it HAS to be achievable. Of all dumb luck, I have a jazzer friend who says his modulus 5 string bass (all graphite neck) is light, and totally stable, low action. His idea of that may be different than mine. I might disagree. Plus, I've seen plenty of graphite necks that were really just ****. I mean that...warped, twisted, unable to counter string tension...and this is going back 30 years. Most looked liked a fancy way to have an awful sounding bass. But I also believe some are great. I did play one back breaking modulus VJ (10.5 lbs) that adjustred arrow straigh, with essentially no buzz or bad fret noise. But it was a killer on the shoulder and cost 2700 new. No way. VJs WERE all over ebay at like a grand or less until Modulus folded, then they totally disappeared. Modulus used to offer VJ necks cheap...for no more than 700.00. They seemed to be losing momey on them, no surprise. I almost got one, but that's al over now. What held me back was their honest statement that getting one at under 2 pounds would be real hard. FYI a 2 lb neck is about the limit for a nice feeling bass...no mater how light you get the body, that 2lb neck (for me) just sits hard on the shoulder. I will soon sell my Pau Ferro/ Goncalo neck because of this. Most really don't agree. It is a tone screamer...midrange that kills. And no neck dive on a very light body. I just like the feel of a neck that seems to float out there. Hard to do with lots of steel or graphite.
    OK, treatise over...I'd appreciate it if more of us here did serious research on synthetics, resins, etc. a LOT of what people state is rehashed, and simply untrue. A lot of info is gleaned from sites that sell the products in question, and some offer (science) that when looked at closely, proves nothing. Same goes for "penetrating" oils and resins...almost nothing actually penetrates wood deeply, and even autoclaved, pressurized treatment of wood to push plastics, resins in, has not yielded demonstrably consistent results. Acrilyzed wood, I think it's called. A great idea that could obviate the search for synthetics...if it really works.
    Any info on the subject of ultra stable, truly useable neck materials is much appreciated.
  18. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    yeah, i remember those when they came out, they had a sound and feel way closer to wood instruments, but with some added graphite stability. very nice as i recall.

    interesting points about these "space age" materials still being affected by temperature and moisture. that reinforces my bias towards adjustable rods to deal with it rather than a hope for some super bullet-proof material that won't be affected by it.
  19. SidMau


    Sep 3, 2012
    My only complaint is that I'm not always in-tune.
  20. Shedua511


    Apr 6, 2013
    Oslo, Norway
    Agent for Scandinavian countries: Stick Enterprises Inc.
    I have four basses with Status replacement necks: two 4 string Jazz basses and two 5 string Stingrays. Of both I have one fretted and one fretless.
    First off, all contemporary Status necks and all Status basses have a truss rod: for all 4, I've set it once and never had to tweak it (my oldest one is a fretless jazz I assembled in 2009).
    I only put the first one, the fretless jazz, on a weight: precisely 1 Kg, which is roughly the same as an averagely light all-wood neck in my experience. The other ones were roughly the same weight.
    The necks are hollow, with a foam inside, but there's a wooden insert in the heel, making it easy to attach to a body. My latest neck, which I got in 2013 had an extra reinforcement wooden in the headstock, an unannounced factory upgrade.

    The necks are truly great! After all, I did like them so much that I got 4... I live in Norway and there are often terrible jumps in temperature from the street to the stage: while wooden necks can go crazy, the Status necks never need any tweaking and 99% of the times the bass stays in tune. That would be enough of a reason for me, but they also sound wonderful.
    Another real plus is that Rob Green and his wife Dawn are a pleasure to deal with.
    I can't recommend Status necks highly enough!

    Just to put another record straight: the plural of status is indeed status, it's a word of the fourth declination (I endured 5 years of Latin in school...), but this will not keep me from visiting statii.com
    Lots of great info and people there, though obviously no latinists :D